Rotary helps Rushden Mind rise from the ashes

The official opening of Rushden Mind
The official opening of Rushden Mind

There are times when you just know you are in the right organisation and mix with the best sort of people.

Rotarians visited the Rushden Mind Phoenix Centre recently and could not help but feel great pride in what has been achieved at the former YMCA/Peter Crisp store which is in Skinner’s Hill, Rushden.

Rotary has played a significant role through Arthur Hollomon, John Walker and donations from the Rotary Club of Rushden Chichele.

The building is called the Phoenix Centre for a very good reason. The old Mind building was burned to the ground and although it was rebuilt, the new rent was far more than the trustees could afford.

So after a couple of false starts Mind was offered the present premises to do with what they could.

The building was in a very sorry state and lesser people would not have begun the project. But Rotarian Arthur Hollomon, strongly supported by his wife, the dynamic councillor and former mayor Marian who with a dedicated team have worked for more than three years planning, scrounging, building and painting to achieve a facility they hope will become a community asset.

Currently, anyone with any kind of mental health difficulty can drop in or be referred and receive trained help. What is impressive is the amount of scrounging, begging, borrowing, finding and asking that has gone on.

The kitchen area is a good example: from the lights in the ceiling to the tiles on the floor to the cupboards, fridge and sink to the tables and chairs – all was “re-cycled” and cost nothing.

Similarly upstairs all the heavy duty doors were recycled.

Mind is affiliated to the national Mind organisation but at local level each club is on its own to do the work and raise the funds.

Other local groups have been forced to close but Rushden, Wellingborough and Kettering are alive and kicking.

Rushden Chichele Rotary has supported the club in the past and this is intended to continue. The Phoenix has definitely risen from the ashes.